How to Thank Your Hospice Care Provider

Hospice care workers are skilled professionals and provide medical, emotional, nutritional and even spiritual care to people with long-term and terminal illnesses – and their families. They include nurses, social workers, and therapists. Most often, the care takes place at the patient’s home.

Being a hospice worker takes compassion and care. Hours can be long and sometimes unpredictable, and no day is the same. Hospice workers offer exemplary care to patients and their families by lessening the burden on families and putting the patient first. Here’s how to show them some appreciation for their hard work and the compassion that they provide patients and their families.


Help a hospice care provider feel at home

If a hospice worker is helping you in your home, offer something to drink or help them feel at home. If you’re making something in your kitchen, you could make a little extra and offer them a plate. If you are comfortable doing so, let the hospice worker know they are free to use the kitchen as they need and set up a specific area for their things. This can help them to feel like they are not imposing while at your home. The last thing they want is to make more work for you or your family.


Write a heartfelt thank you note

Write a heartfelt thank you note or letter to your hospice provider expressing how they’ve helped you through the process and have taken care of your loved one. Hospice providers feel they develop a strong bond of trust and care about each and every one of their patients’ health, comfort and families. Hospice care providers are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help patients and their families.


Give feedback to the hospice care provider’s organization

You can provide feedback to the hospice care provider’s organization and let them know the great job the hospice worker did for your loved one and your family. You could also send a letter to the hospice association that worker may be a part of, such as Oregon Hospice and Palliative Care Association based in Portland.


Volunteer with your local hospice organization

Give back by volunteering. You can learn more about volunteering with a hospice organization or a local provider by visiting the provider’s website or calling to ask to speak with a volunteer coordinator. Volunteers can help by supporting patients or provide child care assistance. Volunteers can also help with fundraising and administrative work. Some organizations require a volunteer to be over 18, but organizations may also have a special volunteer program for high school students. Volunteering for a local organization can be very emotionally rewarding.


Donate to your provider’s organization

In lieu of flowers at a funeral or memorial service, ask friends and family to donate to your hospice provider’s organization. You can provide the donation information in a service program or obituary.


Thank your provider on World Hospice and Palliative Care Day

Remember your hospice providers and reach out on World Hospice and Palliative Care Day. The day of thanks, remembrance and celebration takes place on the second Saturday in October each year. Around the world, people raise awareness about issues patients and providers face and build an understanding of how to care for people living with terminal illnesses.


Photo by Jean Philippe Delberghe

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